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InsureWithMax Blog

Date: 15 July 2019 by Max Robinson

You’re dismissed from work: made redundant

Last week the news channels were showing employees walking from UK buildings, clutching boxes. This means that they were dismissed, most likely due to non-renewing a fixed-term contract or being made redundant. In my 30-year career, I have been made redundant twice, each time I was in a steady job and then shown the door by my employer. If you have been made redundant, how did you cope?

Date: 08 July 2019 by Max Robinson

Coping with a shy child

I was a shy child. My mother was a shy adult, and I always wondered whether her shyness rubbed-off on me. No one can pinpoint what causes shyness. It may be an inherited behaviour or maybe shaped by family relationships. Do you have a shy child?

Date: 01 July 2019 by Max Robinson

Mind the gap (year)

The A-levels exams are over and it’s time to look to further education. When I began my degree, the number of students taking gap-years was relatively small. Today, many A-level students want to escape the classroom before university and recharge their batteries using a gap-year. Would you support your child taking a gap-year?

Date: 24 June 2019 by Max Robinson

Age old decision – children attending a rock festival

It’s a post-GCSE ritual for thousands of 16-year-olds; a rite of passage for any young adult before going into the sixth form. For most parents the thought of their teenager being away for 72 hours at a music festival is a major decision. Would you let your teenage children attend a music festival?

Date: 17 June 2019 by Max Robinson

The joys of a staycation

Last year’s summer kept on giving us beautiful sunny days. The perfect reason for having a staycation. Tourism experts estimated holidaying in the UK last year pumped about £31bn into the economy. Are you planning a staycation this year?

Date: 10 June 2019 by max robinson

Drive an electric car for zero emissions

I’m intrigued by electric cars, as the sales in the UK remains relatively small, but the selection of new electric cars is growing fast. Car manufacturers are embracing the new technology, delivering models with longer ranges, faster charging times and lower prices. Should you consider electric driving?

Date: 03 June 2019 by Max Robinson

Working a 4-day week is the norm

I began my career working a 5-day week but expect to end it working a work 4-day week (being self-employed). Recently, a UK call centre is moving from a 37.5-hour week to a 30-hour week; it will need a 20% increase in productivity to maintain business performance. Bosses believe greater use of data analytics and the web means fewer calls. Would you like to work a 4-day week for the same pay?

Date: 27 May 2019 by Max Robinson

The scent of pet insurance

I’m not keen on dogs, but I love cats, having grown up with them. However, the UK’s most popular pet is a dog, with 26% people owning one. Pet owners claim that having a pet makes them feel happy and improves their quality of life. If you are a pet owner, do you buy pet insurance?

Date: 20 May 2019 by Max Robinson

Young Person Suicide (warning: a tough read)

Mental health is not something that I shy away from. My mother committed suicide and although I don’t suffer from mental health issues, I have seen family members struggle. If you notice signs or feel that a young person is at risk of suicide, intervening can save a life.

Date: 10 May 2019 by Max Robinson

Saving to the max

I am in my mid 50’s and looking to retire in my 60’s, but if had become an extreme-saver in my 20’s, then I would expect to retire in my early 40’s. This is what the FIRE movement, (Financial Independence Retire Early) aim to do. FIRE breaks the old rule of working for many decades before retiring at 68. Do you want to be part of FIRE movement?

Date: 06 May 2019 by Max Robinson

Exam heaven or hell

We are in the GCSE exam season; the trick to exam success is to revise and be prepared as you walk into the examination room. While studying for my professional insurance exams, I was working full-time and revising before starting work and at the weekends; it was challenging. Do you have children revising for exams?

Date: 29 April 2019 by Max Robinson

Carry on homework

When it came to homework, I was a self-starter. I did ask for help from my parents when needed. Many parents encourage their kids to do their homework, knowing that they took their homework seriously. Do you reinforce the message that homework is a priority for success at school?

Date: 23 April 2019 by Max Robinson

Joining the dark side

If like me, you use the internet, you may have heard about the dark web, but have no idea what it is. It’s possible that your children are visiting or using the dark web (Tor); it’s not dangerous or illegal to visit the dark web. In contrast the evidence shows that sex offenders are more likely to interact with victims on the open web. Take 5-minutes to understand the dark web.

Date: 15 April 2019 by Max Robinson

Let’s talk money – it’s harder than talking about sex

My name is Max and I talk about money. Admitting you can talk about money is a good thing for you and your children. For the previous generation, they saw shame in having financial difficulties and often kept quiet about money troubles. Are you teaching your children to open about money?

Date: 08 April 2019 by Max Robinson

Work-life equilibrium

I’ve spent over 30 years working and the workload hasn’t reduced; worse it’s gone up. The use of email, laptops and phones mean that we don’t leave work as we arrive home. Over-working and neglecting your personal life can make you vulnerable to mental health issues. Do you take work home? If yes, check you work-life balance.

Date: 01 April 2019 by Max Robinson

The Cash King is dying

I still use cash for small purchases, as I like to keep track of spending. More and more coffee shops and small retailers are taking electronic payment only. In the UK, cash use has been falling leading to 2017 seeing debit card payments overtake cash payments. A recent report stated that at current rate of decline, it would mean cash use would cease in 2026. Are you ready for cashless spending?

Date: 25 March 2019 by Max Robinson

Your Money or your happiness

Money and happiness as measures have always fascinated me; if money bought happiness, then millionaires would never suffer from depression and only poor people would be unhappy. But real life is complex; a YouGov survey stated that 5% of people on £5,000-£10,000 said they were always happy, as did 4% of those earning £50,000-£60,000, as did 4% earning £150,000 and above. Do you measure your happiness through money?

Date: 18 March 2019 by Max Robinson

Sleep like a baby

You read about living well, the work life balance, eating less sugar and having 5 fruit and veg a day. However, you don’t read that a lack of sleep means feeling grumpy and not working at your best. If you were to suffer from sleep deprivation, then expect your physical health to suffer. Are you sleeping well?

Date: 11 March 2019 by Max Robinson

Time-off work for sick a child

Any working parent with a boss faces the dilemma of a sick child: losing money (unpaid time-off) or using up holiday. Less money means the parents’ health and wellness may suffer. A work scenario: being disciplined for having too much time-off due to a sick child. What would you do?

Date: 04 March 2019 by Max Robinson

Mind the pension gap

I have always supported females joining the workforce. However, it saddens me that over 100 years since women secured the vote, a gender pay gap remains in almost every occupation. Worse, this pay gap translates into women receiving less private pension money at retirement. Have you thought about the gender pay gap affecting your pension?